Skip to comments.Two Things That Inspire My 'Father Factor'
Posted on 06/20/2021 6:39:58 AM PDT by Kaslin
How relevant are fathers in the lives of their children? The answer can actually be calculated. According to research from the U.S. Census Bureau, when a child is raised without a father, he or she is four times more likely to live in poverty, seven times more likely to face teen pregnancy and twice as likely to drop out of school.
Perhaps even more chilling is what that research reveals as a correlation between fatherlessness and our societal malaise.
That same study found that “18.3 million children, 1 in 4, live without a biological, step or adoptive father in the home,” making the case that there is a “‘father factor’ in nearly all of the societal ills facing America today.” But for some reason, the spirit of the age tries to deny this. From movies to sitcoms, to news outlets and politicians, it would be a stretch to say that our culture believes that fathers are essential, let alone influential.
And so it starts with us as men. It starts with what we value most – the words that matter to us.
“It’s a girl!”
“It’s a girl!”
“It’s a boy!”
“Here’s your daughter!”
This grand total of 12 words are some of the most significant spoken to me in my life.
To be honest, much of what I do as a father doesn’t require any skill. I think that 95% of being a dad is just showing up.I’m willing to be accused of having the “dad bod” or being told “that was a dad joke” because at the end of the day, I want my kids to be able to say two things: 1) Dad was there for me, and 2) Dad loved me.
As a dad, I don’t want to miss anything. I’ve been to auditions, plays, recitals and dances. I can’t tell you how many games I’ve attended and coached. We’ve fished, we’ve hiked, we’ve surfed, we’ve walked the neighborhood to get as much candy as possible while it snowed on Halloween every year in Colorado.
I have sat in the stands and felt as though I was going to freeze to death, only to watch my son score the winning goal to advance in the playoffs. And I’ve cried with them when they missed the extra point, lost the game, were not chosen for the role, didn’t get the call back from the dream date and faced the devastating breakup.
I don’t regret being there for any of it.
I wouldn’t be so presumptuous to call myself “the world’s best father” or even “a good father.” My kids, my wife and God will be the final judges of how I played this role. But I can tell you most assuredly that I didn’t just “wing it” when I accepted the role of dad. There are two things that have helped and even inspired me to be the father that I am.
Fatherhood is unlike anything else. It’s difficult to describe - perhaps impossible. It’s interesting that of all titles the Bible uses for God, the one that seems to be used the most is “Father.” In fact, God is referred to as "our Father" 13 times in the Old Testament. Jesus referred to God as his father over 150 times and He spoke of God as being our father 30 times. When teaching us how to pray, Jesus didn’t say “Our King” or “Our Provider” or “Our Peace.” Jesus lifted his voice and said “Our Father.”
In the pages of the Bible I discover who God is and what he is like. I cannot overstate the impact of the Bible in my quest to be a worthy dad. I read it every day, and believe me when I say I (and my family) can see the difference it makes.
As crazy as it sounds, my love of music has helped me savor the moments that could have easily been lost by chasing lesser things.
Years ago, Harry Chapin’s song inspired me to opt out of the rat race. I was haunted that anyone could experience the regret he wrote about at the end of his infamous song, “Cat’s In The Cradle.” After years of travel, of avoiding the role of dad and providing “the good life,” the main character of the song had a “reap what you sow” moment.
I've long since retired, my son's moved away
I called him up just the other day
I said, I'd like to see you if you don't mind
He said, I'd love to, dad, if I can find the time
You see, my new job's a hassle, and the kids have the flu
But it's sure nice talking to you, dad
It's been sure nice talking to you
And as I hung up the phone, it occurred to me
He'd grown up just like me
My boy was just like me
And so I listen, I cry and I get pumped up to walk inside the house into the most important roles I’ve been given as a man. One is being a husband. The other - dad.
I follow God’s lead and I soak it up. I play the board games. I pick the kids up from practice. I ask them “What was your favorite part of your day?”
“Father” is a sobering title. Living into it isn’t rocket science, but it is priceless.
My biological father was a wife beating asshole, my brother and I actually conspired to beat him to death if he ever layed a hand on our mother again.
We had the baseball bats ready to go when MOM told us to get in the car, we left and never went back!
Four years later MOM met, and with our consent married Jake, our step father.
JAKE was my FATHER, and taught me what being a real MAN and a potential FATHER was supposed to be.
ALTHOUGH YOU HAVE BEEN GONE MANY YEARS; THANKS DAD, and HAPPY FATHERS DAY.
JAKE I. S*****, my FATHER and my HERO!
Today I wished all the fathers a Happy Oppressive Patriarchy Day. I see myself having a future in academia.
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